RAGBRAI stands for Register's Annual Great Bike Ride Across Iowa. The ride started in 1973, when a group of friends decided to go for a "casual ride" across the entire state. It has become an annual tradition that attracts thousands of cyclists from all over the country. Lance Armstrong has ridden a few times. Jimmie Johnson joined him this year, apparently. The route is different each year (and announced with a grand ceremony in late January/early February). Cyclists sign up, and pay really good money, to spend seven days riding across the state.
Needless to say, it's a BIG deal in this state. Not only is it a tradition, but it is a pretty decent economic draw for Iowa as well.
I have been wanting to ride one day of this event for a long time. I've come close to doing it a few times in the past, but it never quite worked out. Until now.
Yesterday, I woke up at 5 a.m. after spending the night on my bestie's couch. We loaded our bikes into her husband's truck and traveled an hour and a half to Centerville. From there, we joined the other cyclists for day five of this huge ride.
|RAGBRAI attracts thousands of riders each year.|
The first leg wasn't bad. The second wasn't either, honestly. The weather was gorgeous, and the ride was mostly flat. Until we got past Unionville. Rolling hills killed our energy completely.
We called someone to come get us a little bit outside of our original ending destination.
|This is my "over it" face."|
Today, I'm sunburned, my legs are achy, and my butt would protest getting back on my bicycle. But other than that, I had a great time riding and chatting with my friend. And I have an even greater appreciation for the people who do all seven days. And even more for the people who do this EVERY YEAR.
Does your state have a famous race or similar fitness event?